OAKLAND, Calif. – The Oakland A’s traded catcher Kurt Suzuki and cash considerations to the Washington Nationals for minor league catcher David Freitas, the club announced today.
Suzuki was batting .218 with one home run and 18 RBI in 75 games with the A’s. After hitting .197 in May and June, he was batting .278 since July 1. He started 629 of the A’s 786 games (80.0%) at catcher from July 16, 2007 (the date Jason Kendall was traded) through June 20, 2012 (the date Derek Norris was recalled), but has started just 15 of 36 games since then (41.7%). Suzuki was leading American League catchers with a .996 fielding percentage and ranked second with a caught stealing percentage of 31.2.
Suzuki was drafted by the A’s in the second round of the 2004 First-Year Player Draft and made his Major League debut in 2007. He reached double figures in home runs in three consecutive seasons from 2009-11 and led the A’s in RBI in 2009 (88) and 2010 (71). Suzuki is a .254 career hitter with 57 home runs and 302 RBI in 703 games. His 669 games caught are second most in Oakland history to Terry Steinbach (1050).
Freitas was batting .271 with five home runs and 46 RBI in 78 games with Single-A Potomac of the Carolina League. He was originally drafted by Washington in the 15th round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft and made his professional debut at Vermont in 2010. The 23-year old right-handed hitter batted .288 with 13 home runs and 73 RBI in 123 games with Hagerstown last year and led the South Atlantic League with 82 walks. Freitas is a .288 career hitter with 22 home runs and 159 RBI in 263 games over three professional seasons. He also has 155 walks for a .398 on-base percentage.